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Star Trek: Alternate Realities Collective
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Available for the first time on DVD is a collection featuring the bizarre and strange of episodes of Star Trek! See your favorite characters behaving contrary to type in familiar but odd circumstances in Star Trek: Alternate Realities, a 5-disc fan-collective that includes 20 episodes selected from all five Star Trek television series plus exclusive special features.
Star Trek Collective: Alternate Realities is the sixth entry in the Star Trek: Fan Collective series (but not named as such, presumably because these episodes weren't selected by fan vote), and it's a good one. The categorization can be a bit random and anyone could argue about the selections, but it's a good all-around sampler collection from all five live-action series with some all-time-classic episodes (sorry, no Animated Series here, though "Yesteryear" or "The Counter-Clock Incident" would have fit). It starts with six episodes from the "Mirror Universe," in which crew members become their psychological opposites and Spock has a beard in "Mirror, Mirror," and in which Deep Space 9 ("Crossover," "Through the Looking Glass," "Shattered Mirror") then Enterprise ("In a Mirror Darkly, Parts 1 and 2," melding the Original Series' "Mirror, Mirror" and Tholian Web episodes) made memorable visits. The next category is "Parallel Dimensions," and in the Original Series episode "The Alternative Factor," Kirk meets two different versions of Lazarus. That's followed by the final-season Next Generation episode "Parallels," in which Worf bounces back and forth among various crew scenarios. The third category, "Twisted Realities," finds two contrasting-personality versions of Kirk in "The Enemy Within" and then his body is taken over by Janice Lester in the final episode of the Original Series, "Turnabout Intruder." That's followed by TNG's "Frame of Mind," in which Riker seems to jump between the ship and a mental hospital, and "Shattered," in which Chakotay experiences numerous stages of Voyager's past.
The final category, "Alternate Lives," has the most episodes (though, oddly, none from the Original Series). It starts with two TNG episodes, "Yesterday's Enterprise" (the highly regarded journey to a militarized Enterprise) and "The Inner Light" (Picard imagining himself leading a "normal" life) and "The Visitor" (also very highly regarded) from DS9 in which a grown-up version of Sisko's son, Jake, grew up without his father. In Voyager's "Before and After," Kes appears to be jumping backward through time, in "Timeless" Chakotay and Paris go back in history to try to repair a past mistake, and all the crew discovers they're duplicates in "Course: Oblivion." Enterprise closes the set with two episodes: "E2," in which Archer is confronted by descendants of the ship's crew, and "Twilight," in which Archer finds himself 12 years in the future with the human-Xindi conflict now over. Extra material includes a 5- to 15-minute featurette on each theme (two each for the "Mirror Universe" and "Alternate Realities") of new interviews with the producers and writers of the episodes plus some archival interviews (indicated by the footage appearing in a different frame) and one new commentary track per disc. --David Horiuchi
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Top Customer Reviews
I found these episodes refreshing, they allowed our familiar characters and actors to explore "what if" stories. In many of these we get to see different portrayals, like an evil and ambitious Captain Archer, or Kirk who has had his mind and body swapped with that of a woman.
The only weak point on this set is possibly the special features. These are mostly done by the producers and some of the cast of Enterprise. I would have liked more of all of the series cast members involved. Regardless, this is still a solid and varied collection.
My favorites were all the Original Star Trek (OST) episodes, two of the Star Trek: The Next Generation (STTNG) episodes, and all but one of the Voyager episodes. But even among these, there are others I would have preferred to some of the offerings.
For instance, why weren't the episodes about the OST trio meeting up with intergalactic mobsters and Nazis included in this volume? I like STTNG "Yesterdays Enterprise", but already have it on the "Time Travel" DVD set. "Rascals", or "A Fist Full of Datas" would have fit nicely in this volume. I don't recall the name of the Voyager episode that had the crew placed in a WWII setting, but I would have liked that two-part episode instead of the one that involved Kes, and the one where the crew were merely replicates of the genuine Voyager crew.
I don't care for either Deep Space Nine or Enterprise, but did find the DS9 episodes interesting --especially the first DS9 episode that most directly linked itself to the OST episode "Mirror, Mirror". I understand why the Enterprise episode that had the OST "Mirror, Mirror" theme was included, but I didn't care for it all the same. And, if I were an Enterprise fan, I would been terribly disappointed that one of the remaining Enterprise episodes was a two-part that only included part two! There was a more interesting two part episode from Enterprise that had the Vulcan and the engineer (through genetic engineering --no pun intended) produce a female Vulcan-human hybrid; a better episode I would have liked to have seen instead of the other two Enterprise episodes offered. Yes, it would have meant two two-part episodes, but so be it. At least there would have been two complete two-part episodes --and I would have liked one of them...
My husband wonders why we bought this DVD set. At least we purchased it at a greatly discounted price.
Live long and prosper by not wasting your money buying this set at full retail!
& Next Gen didn't have any "mirror" episodes during their 7 seasons). I was never a huge fan of Star Trek:Enterprise, however watching the "In a Mirror, Darkly Pts 1 & 2" made me realize I didn't give that show a fair chance (Enterprise was quite good! Watch it if you haven't). I bought one copy of Alternate Realities for myself and bought one for a friend's birthday. I HIGHLY recommend this particular set over the other ones as it takes our familiar Trek characters and shows a "What IF..??" side to them. I think you'll enjoy having it and watching it as much as I have.